Classic Pumpkin Scones

You can find the most delicious recipe for classic pumpkin scones right here! Super flaky and perfectly spiced, these scones are your new favorite fall treat.

pumpkin scones with maple icing

I always feel a jolt of excitement and satisfaction when I crack open that first can of pumpkin each Fall season. And pumpkin scones are definitely what we should all make first!

For pumpkin breakfast, we’ve done pumpkin crumb cake, pumpkin cheesecake muffins, pumpkin cinnamon rollspumpkin crumb muffins, pumpkin coffee creamer, pumpkin bread, pumpkin pancakes, and a “skinny” frozen pumpkin coffee treat! There’s always room for more pumpkin at the breakfast table and pumpkin scones have been on my baking bucket list for years. Truth is, I’ve been nervous to attempt them because pumpkin scones from the bakery are just so good. I was also wary that I wouldn’t get the texture right, but after a couple tries, I produced what I believe to be the best pumpkin scones on the planet. Of course that’s just my opinion, but my taste testers loved them.

And I have a feeling you’ll be quick to agree!

plate of pumpkin scones

These Pumpkin Scones are:

  • quick and simple if you follow the recipe closely
  • not overly sweet
  • tender and flaky in the center
  • crumbly on the corners
  • crispy on top
  • buttery
  • perfectly pumpkin-spiced
  • topped with maple icing
  • autumn in a triangle ♥

We’re basically making my favorite scones recipe, but pumpkin flavored. 🙂

pumpkin scone

Success Tips for Pumpkin Scones

I’ve shared these scone tips before, but it’s important to read over them before you begin. There are many little quirks to these pumpkin scones that make them the best!

  1. Heavy cream makes a delicious pumpkin scone. Buttermilk does too! Avoid substituting another dairy or even nondairy milk. You’ll lose a lot of flavor and texture.
  2. Use frozen butter. Like pie crust, it’s best to use cold butter in scone dough. You’ll work the cold butter into the dry ingredients so that it coats the flour and creates crumbs. When the little butter/flour crumbs melt as the scones bake, they release steam and create little pockets of air. These pockets create a flaky and airy center, while keeping the edges crumbly and crisp. Refrigerated butter might melt in the dough as you work with it, but frozen butter will hold out until the oven. It guarantees scone success.
  3. Grate the butter. Weird, right? The finer the pieces of cold butter, the easier they are to evenly mix into the dry ingredients. You can, of course, just cut the frozen butter with a sharp knife, but I like to begin with teeny butter shreds instead. See photo in my master scones recipe.
  4. Blot the pumpkin. Trust me on this. See this post!
  5. Don’t over mix the pumpkin scone dough. After you mix the cold butter into the dry ingredients, it’s time to add your wet ingredients. Mix everything together with ease. Like pie crust, overworking the dough will build up the gluten in the flour. This results in a tough and not-so-pleasant texture.
  6. And I swear by this: before baking, brush the scones with heavy cream or buttermilk, whichever you used in the dough. This layer of liquid sets on top of the scones and drizzles down the sides when they’re in the hot oven, creating an even crispier scone exterior.

2 images of pumpkin scone dough in glass bowls

2 images of pumpkin scone dough shaped into a circle and cut into trianges

Pumpkin Scones Dough

Cut frozen grated butter into the dry ingredients with a pastry cutter.

Pumpkin scone dough will be crumbly. Those white specks are frozen butter, not white chocolate chips. Frozen butter is where all the texture comes from. See tip #2 above. But that’s not to say white chocolate chips can’t make an appearance today. 1 cup of white or regular chocolate chips, nuts, or even cinnamon chips fit right in here!

Work the scone dough with your hands, then shape into a disc and cut into triangles. Before baking, brush with a little heavy cream or buttermilk, then sprinkle with coarse sugar for an extra crunch– always my go-to when I prepare homemade scones!

pumpkin scones

Add Icing!

A drizzle or drench of maple glaze adds a satisfying finale to our pumpkin scones. Instead of maple, try brown butter icing or classic vanilla icing. It’s best to pour the glaze all over the pumpkin scones while they’re warm so it melts down into every flake, every crack, and every crevice. This means that each bite has a crumbly edge, a flaky center, pumpkin spice galore, and melty maple icing.

Yes this IS what heaven tastes like.

pumpkin scones with maple icing

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plate of pumpkin scones

Classic Pumpkin Scones

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 8 scones
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Deliciously spiced classic pumpkin scones are flaky and soft with perfectly crumbly edges. Top with coarse sugar for extra crunch and maple icing for extra decadence!


Ingredients

  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice*
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, frozen
  • 1/3 cup + 2 Tablespoons (105ml) heavy cream, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup (115g) canned pumpkin puree, blotted*
  • 1/2 cup (100g) light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • optional: coarse sugar for sprinkling on top before baking

Maple Glaze

  • 2 Tablespoons (30gunsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup (112g) sifted confectioners’ sugar
  • pinch salt, to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). Adjust baking rack to the middle-low position. Line 1 or 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mat(s). If making mini scones, I use 2 baking sheets. Set aside.
  2. Make the scones: Whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt together in a large bowl. Grate the frozen butter (I use a box grater). Add the grated butter to the flour mixture and combine it with a pastry cutter, a fork, or your fingers until the mixture comes together in pea-sized crumbs. Set aside.
  3. Whisk 1/3 cup (75ml) heavy cream, the egg, blotted pumpkin (see note), brown sugar, and vanilla extract together in a small bowl. Drizzle it over the flour mixture and then mix it all together until everything appears moistened.
  4. With floured hands, work the dough into a ball as best you can and transfer onto a floured work surface. Press into a neat 8-inch disc and, with a very sharp knife, cut into 8 equal wedges. To make smaller scones, press dough into two 5-inch discs and cut each into 8 equal wedges. (Larger scones are pictured in this blog post.)
  5. Place scones at least 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet(s). Using a pastry brush, brush scones with remaining heavy cream and sprinkle with coarse sugar, if desired. (Gives a nice crunch!)
  6. Bake the larger scones for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned. If you made 16 smaller scones, bake for 18-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes as you prepare the icing.
  7. Make the glaze: In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and maple syrup together, whisking occasionally. Once the butter has melted, remove from heat and whisk in the sifted confectioners’ sugar. Taste and add a pinch of salt if desired. Drizzle over warm scones.
  8. Scones are best enjoyed right away, though leftover scones keep well at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 2 extra days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: Plain baked scones freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator then heat up to your liking before icing and enjoying.
  2. Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls | White Mixing Bowls | Measuring CupsPastry Cutter | Baking Sheet | Saucepan | Whisk | Cooling Rack | White Plate | Sprinkling Sugar
  3. Pumpkin Pie Spice: Instead of prepared pumpkin pie spice, you can use 1/2 teaspoon each: ground allspice and ground ginger AND 1/4 teaspoon each: ground nutmeg and ground cloves.
  4. Blotting Pumpkin: Using a paper towel or clean kitchen towel, lightly blot the pumpkin puree to remove some of the moisture before using in the recipe. The more moisture removed, the less moist and muffin-like the scones will taste. We want the scones to be flaky and crumbly, not super moist or muffin-like. I prefer to squeeze lots of moisture out so the scones taste textured and delicious. Do what you prefer!

268 Comments

  1. These were delicious. I didn’t have heavy cream so used buttermilk. One question on the glaze, did you mean 1 cup of conf sugar, sifted or 1 cup sifted conf sugar? The one cup already sifted didn’t seem like enough, the glaze was way too thin.

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      We are so happy you enjoyed this recipe, Kristen! We did sift before measuring but you can certainly add more confectioners sugar for a thicker glaze if you wish.

  2. Sally, I don’t know you but you sure know scones! These are beautiful! Thank you 🙂

    1. Do you happen to have any nutritional information on this recipe? How many calories, fat and sugar are in a scone? Thanks.

  3. Delicious!! Turned out perfect! I sprinkled pumpkin spice on top of glaze! Will definitely be making again:)

  4. Robin Dextradeur says:

    Hi Sally
    I’m a big fan of your scones and many of them are put in fridge prior to baking, was planning to make these at night and bake in the morning, is the pumpkin too watery for the usual method to work? Thanks so much, if have already answered this, such a long list of comments, I apologize.

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Robin, You can shape this scone dough into wedges and refrigerate overnight before baking. Enjoy!

      1. Love the recipe. Can I use a 2 1/4″ round biscuit cutter and serve as a biscuit and sub pumpkin with sweet potato?
        TY

  5. Yum! The flavor and texture of these scones are amazing. I couldn’t resist making them again 10 days later. I added cinnamon chips to one batch and they were great. The maple icing is so good I could just eat the whole pan with a spoon. I’m excited to make your maple brown sugar cookies with the same icing soon and I might even drizzle some over the apple crumble pie for Thanksgiving.
    Thank you for yet another fantastic recipe!

  6. I’ve made these a couple times and they’re my favorite scone recipe yet. Just put in a batch for thanksgiving morning

  7. Hi was wondering if I could use canned organic pumpkin for this recipe

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Yes, definitely!

  8. I messed these up and they are still excellent! My oven went a little hot and burned the bottoms when I checked at 20 minutes (large scones). Able to salvage the scone tops and glazed them. Still delicious. Will have to check ~15-18 for my oven.

    I used fresh pumpkin puree instead of canned.

    Also plan to half the glaze recipe next time, and half the sugar in it. Its gorgeous but makes a lot of glaze, and the flavor of the scone is so good I don’t want to hide that.

  9. I just adore your site! I ran out of maple syrup so tried molasses instead and a bit of ginger for the glaze! Turned out great, not as sweet which I like better.

  10. These scones were delicious the glaze was perfect thank you for posting. Will be making these again

  11. how would plumped golden raisins with cinnamon chips be as add ins?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Lee, You can add a total of 1 cup of add ins (for example, half cup raisins and half cup cinnamon chips). Fold them into the dough after you add the wet ingredients. Enjoy!

  12. Thank you for the quick response. I’m thinking some cinnamon chips or diced candied ginger and some golden raisins plumped in bourbon

  13. Christine J Walsh says:

    Excellent recipe and excellent tips. Have never grated my frozen butter before, and just want to say that is a game changer! Thank you!

  14. I made this with gluten free flour as an experiment (and a bit of a pantry cleanout), and albeit a slightly denser texture, still damn tasty! Can’t wait to make them again with regular flour, that maple glaze is crack. Could I add nuts to the batter or would they sink?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Abby, so happy you loved these scones. Yes, you can add nuts, around a cup should be perfect!

  15. Michele L. Lewis says:

    ABSOLUTELY, FABULOUSLY DELICIOUS! I’m blaming you Miss Sally for all my weight gain! Lol To my fellow bakers, I would definitely make two, if you’re having company. If not, say you’re only baking this for one or two, then I say good for it! It’s huge! Yet, it holds together beautifully and is perfectly moist (even my sneaky slice right out of the oven). This is the most delicious scone I have ever made! Of course, I love pumpkin so that helps. I thought I came up with the idea to grate my butter! I do it for my (your) pie crust also. I’ve been making your pumpkin and pecan pies for 2 years now and everyone loves them! I just whipped up a pecan pie for my daughter’s friend to take home, while she was visiting, because she loves it so much! Thank you so much! I have many recipes yet to try.

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